S a l f o r d
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F o o t b a l l
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Salford City football Club

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Team Sheet

Solihull Moors
1
Ryan Boot
2
Tyrone Williams
3
Jamie Reckord
4
Kyle Storer (c)
5
Liam Daly
6
Alex Gudger
8
Darren Carter
9
Adi Yussuf

Thomas '76

17
Luke Maxwell
19
Danny Wright

Carline '90

23
Matty Stenson

Hylton '65

Salford City FC
1
Chris Neal
2
Scott Wiseman
3
Ibou Touray
6
Carl Piergianni
8
Lois Maynard
9
Adam Rooney (c)
10
Danny Lloyd
11
Tom Walker

Hogan '82

18
Danny Whitehead
23
Nathan Pond
30
Rory Gaffney
Substitutes
10
Jermaine Hylton
12
George Carline
14
Kwame Thomas
15
Harry Flowers
18
Jordan Murphy
Substitutes
5
Liam Hogan
12
Max Crocombe
15
Liam Nolan
21
Devante Rodney
Managers
Manager - Tim Flowers
Managers
Manager - Graham Alexander
Match Officals
Referee - Joe Hull
Assistant Referee - Bradley Hall
Assistant Referee - Robert Evans
Fourth Official - Timothy Walker

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Match
Report

Salford City earned a creditable draw from a hard-fought tussle at the Automated Technology Group Stadium. Fourth placed Solihull Moors had only lost one league game at home this season, keeping 7 clean sheets in 7 in 10 games at the ATG - this was never going to be a straightforward afternoon for Graham Alexander’s men. A tight first half was followed by a more open second but despite exerting plenty of late pressure the Ammies became the 3rd consecutive side to leave this venue with a goalless draw.

There was a single change from the side that started Wednesday’s FA Cup defeat to Shrewsbury Town as Lois Maynard was restored to the starting line-up in place of unwell Dennis Politic. Among the substitutes was Liam Nolan, a midfielder signed on loan from Accrington Stanley on Friday.

This afternoon’s entertainment started with both sides sounding each-other out and not taking too many risks. The first to get a sight of goal were Solihull after a free-kick from a deep position was knocked back to the edge of the box by Danny Wright. Big central defender Liam Daly poses quite a threat when pushing forward and here he tried a volley from the edge of the box that dropped just over the crossbar.

It took Salford 6 minutes more to cause the home defence any undue concern after Adam Rooney nodded down a long ball forward. Tom Walker let fly with a low shot from distance that went narrowly wide of Ryan Boot’s left-hand upright.

A cagey start overall and that pattern persisted throughout the opening quarter of the match. Play was largely condensed between the penalty areas, with chances at a premium and respective defences looking solid.

Just before the mid-point of the half Scott Wiseman got into a good position on the right before launching a cross into the penalty area. Rory Gaffney’s powerful run took him in front of Boot but the keeper retained his focus to punch the ball clear.

The Ammies were having some decent spells of possession but the home defence, so mean on their own patch, were proving a tough nut to crack. In the 27th minute Walker lofted a ball forward into the box for Adam Rooney, whose stretching header was held by Boot. At the other end Darren Carter’s drilled, rising corner from the left was met by Daly only for his header to drop harmlessly over the bar.

It was already looking as if something extraordinary might be required to break this deadlock and Salford almost had a timely stroke of luck on the half-hour. Ibou Touray’s cross from wide on the left was slightly over-hit with Boot almost caught out, back-pedalling and stretching to reach a ball that dropped onto the top of his crossbar then out of play.

The Ammies went close again a couple of minutes later after Walker swung in a left-footed free-kick from wide on the right. Carl Piergianni almost made contact with his head but luck was with Solihull as the ball just about ran through to Boot.

Moors had been quiet for a fair old time but 8 minutes before the interval a Matty Owens’ lay-off picked out Adi Yussuf who fired over from just inside the left-hand angle of the box.

Half-time was almost upon us when Solihull won a free-kick wide on the left, between the penalty area and the touchline. Carter’s delivery was decent but Chris Neal rose high amongst the giants to punch the ball clear. Into time added on a long ball dropped for Gaffney but the first touch, off his chest, wasn’t deft enough. Boot, who had advanced quickly to the edge of the area, was able to smother the danger.

HALF-TIME: SOLIHULL MOORS 0 SALFORD CITY 0

Solihull’s home ground affords a good view of planes taking off from the nearby airport and during a sometimes dour first half that had been a welcome distraction.

The second 45 minutes would be far more expansive in terms of attacking football and yielded its first chance within 30 seconds. Moors played the ball forward quickly and Luke Maxwell’s snap-shot was well struck but narrowly off target.

An early jolt for the Ammies but they responded to it positively. A Touray cross from the left was headed out by the towering Daly but only as far as Danny Whitehead, not too far outside the area. The low drive that followed was probably heading straight to Boot until Rooney instinctively stuck out a foot to divert the ball away from him. The keeper did well, getting down to his left to push the ball to relative safety.

Salford were passing the ball around nicely during the second half’s opening stages, probing for weaknesses in Solihull’s defensive shield. None became immediately apparent and it was soon the Moors’ turn to apply a little pressure.

There was a moment of controversy in the 55th minute after a ball into Salford’s penalty area started off a little bit of a scramble. Moors’ number 9 Yussuf finished it off by turning the ball home from a few yards out, with the referee indicating a goal despite the determined protests of the visitors. The referee decided to consult his assistant and after a tense few moments he returned, pointing upfield in dramatic fashion. The home fans behind Neal’s goal initially cheered this as a final confirmation of the goal, but triumph turned to chagrin as it became apparent that a free-kick had been awarded for Yussuf's sneaky foul that left the keeper with a cut chin.

Nil-nil it remained and Owens was the next to threaten, moving inside from the left before trying an off-balance effort from distance that was more of a menace to the passing air traffic that it was to Neal’s goal.

A decent spell for Solhull but the Ammies could have edged ahead on the hour. A crisp passing move ended when Gaffney and then Walker had shots charged down and for this first time Solihull’s well-drilled defence was looking a little bit vulnerable.

Play was opening up quite a bit Yussuf did well to hold up possession outside Salford’s penalty area before nudging a pass to Carter. The midfielder, from outside the box, attempted to guide an effort inside Neal's right-hand post but it was a good height for the keeper who got across to stop and hold the ball.

Daly lifted a pass into the penalty area after that and Owens went down, prompting appeals for a penalty from the home terrace. The referee was not convinced, allowing play to continue and to be fair there was little complaint from the Moors’ players. Seconds later Wright’s determined run took him into the area on the left, but under defensive pressure he could only poke a low effort wide of the target.

With 19 minutes to play a corner from Solihull’s left dropped just beyond the far post for Daly to head back inside, but Neal was able to gather before any blue and yellow shirt could get there.

Salford regained their attacking impetus after that brief hiatus and a nice move involved Walker, Maynard and Rooney before the former slammed in a low shot that was blocked by a defender.

In the 77th minute Danny Lloyd tried his luck with a left-of-centre 20-yarder but couldn’t keep the effort down. Moors hit back and went so close to an opener when substitute Jermaine Hylton cut inside from the left before aiming an angled effort across Neal and off the face of the far post.

A big chance late in the day for Moors but Salford had one of their own to come. In the meantime Lloyd hit a stinger from outside the area but it was too close to Boot who was able to make a save.

The Ammies’ golden late opportunity came with 7 minutes to play after Wright slipped while in possession in midfield. Gaffney collected possession and powered forward through the inside-right channel, hotly pursued by concerned Solihull defenders. The Salford striker got into the area before cutting back inside a challenge to roll an unselfish pass inside and into the path of Maynard. From 15 yards out the midfielder had a clear shot on goal but Boot pulled off a tremendous stop, just about managing to touch the rising effort around his left-hand post.

A very good save from the Moors keeper and his defenders would have plenty more work to do before this game was over. Within a minute or so of that chance Whitehead’s low, right-of-centre 25-yarder clipped off a defender then went wide of Boot’s left-hand post as Salford chased a late winner.

With just 5 minutes left Lloyd’s pass was moved on by Maynard and Rooney before arriving back at his feet. The shot was on but yet again a Solihull body got in the way, deflecting the effort behind for a corner. The Ammies were to force 5 corners over the next couple of minutes but Solihull’s defence held firm, managing to deal with all of them. The 5th was cleared away for thrown-in, taken long from the left by substitute Liam Hogan. Maynard was there to glance on and Daly’s attempt to clear fell temptingly towards the edge of the penalty area where Gaffney was waiting. A volley was the result and it was a decent attempt that didn’t dip enough to trouble Boot.

Salford were finishing the game strongly and in the final minute of the 90 Maynard tackled Wright outside Solihull’s penalty area. Whitehead was first to the loose ball and from nearly 25 yards out and left-of-centre he smashed in a low effort that flew wide of Boot’s left-hand post.

Three minutes of time added on were indicated but despite a rapid Moors’ counter right at the death, neither side could find a way to settle the match in their favour.

FULL-TIME: SOLIHULL MOORS 0 SALFORD CITY 0

A first goalless draw – and in fact a first game without a goal – for Salford since that long-ago warm afternoon in Dagenham on the 1st day of September. This was without a doubt a very competitive game against a strong physical side full of confidence and in good form. The Ammies coped well, enjoying a deal of possession and creating a number of decent chances, especially after the interval.

Perhaps with a little more luck – or composure – in front of goal Salford could have picked up a win and on the balance of chances created might have deserved to do so. Moors can point to that strike of the post but other than that Neal wasn’t tested very often or very seriously (Yussuf’s foul challenge excepted).

A solid afternoon’s work built on team spirit and determination - taking a point home from Solihull is nothing to be sniffed at.

Late goals for Leyton Orient at Wrexham have extended the East Londoners’ lead to 3 points, but the top end of the table remains tight. The Ammies entertain Harrogate Town – whose win over Braintree today allowed them to leapfrog Solihull into 4th place – on Tuesday evening before Havant & Waterlooville travel up from Hampshire on Saturday. The unbeaten league run goes on and there’s everything to play for…

Attendance: 2,216 (227 Salford City)

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